It’s been a year since this signed Picasso artwork worth up to $50,000 was stolen from the DeLind Fine Art Appraisals in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, and gallery owners are still hopeful for its safe return.
“Art can last forever, and I believe sooner or later, it will turn up,” gallery owner Bill DeLind told WDJT.
The 1949 etching “Torero,” meaning bullfighter, by Pablo Picasso was stolen from their lobby in the middle of the day one year ago, DeLind told InsideEdition.com in a previous interview.
“You don’t misplace a piece of art like that,” he said. “It was there in the morning and all of a sudden it was not there.”
Unfortunately, the video cameras were not functioning at the time and staff didn’t spot anyone walking off with the piece, but believes the thief is someone with a good knowledge of modern art.
“Someone with a trained eye would recognize the original signature from Picasso and subject matter,” he said. “It was available on sale but we never put any price tags or identifications, so it’s not like someone looked at it and knew it was worth a lot of money,”
DeLind said he was in touch with galleries, museums and private collectors around the country and the world immediately after the theft, but still hasn’t been able to track down the artwork.
The disappearance is still making waves among local art purveyors a year later.
“Unfortunately, the theft of art is an occurrence that goes on everywhere around the world, especially when you're dealing with the No. 1 most famous 20th-century artist,” said David Barnett, of David Barnett Gallery.
He told WDJT that his gallery, which is also home to several Picasso pieces, has increased security ever since the theft at DeLind Fine Art Appraisals. They also leave their doors locked at all times and escort all clients from the front doors.
DeLind said his appraisal office has also amped up security ever since the incident, making sure security cameras are functioning at all times and moving their office to the front of their gallery.
“[Now] we have direct visual on anyone walking in the door, in addition to the cameras,” he said.